Newcastle United have been up and down in their form this season, but some players have started to develop consistency.
Newcastle United will be utilizing this international break to put an end to their scattered form this season. One week the Magpies look like a solid top ten contender, and the next week fans are palming their faces expecting to be relegated.
There are also times when Newcastle United are out of sync and chasing the ball for 90 minutes, but somehow steal a point before the final whistle, which is what we saw against Tottenham and Wolverhampton.
Speaking to local reporters, Steve Bruce said that he will use this break from action to identify and resolve key areas of improvement in the squad.
As fans all we can do is hope that Bruce does find a way to develop collective consistency going forward. However, some players are holding their end of the bargain by putting in some impressive shifts in the first eight games of the season.
According to the player ratings calculated by WhoScored, the top rated Magpie, with an overall rating of 7.30 is goalkeeper Karl Darlow. Rounding out the top five, in this order, are Allan Saint-Maximin (7.01), Callum Wilson (6.93), Jonjo Shelvey (6.86), and Jacob Murphy (6.82).
Agree or Disagree?
For the most part, I am in agreement with the players listed in this top five, but the order would need to be different. Murphy would be the only player excluded from my top five list, but he should certainly be listed among the top ten.
Darlow being the top player through eight games makes sense seeing that he has made several important saves to keep the Magpies in close games. The fact that he leads the Premier League in saves at this stage in the season is a reflection of how hard he is forced to work between the sticks.
Wilson should be ahead of Saint-Maximin in that list because of his seven-goal contribution – six goals, one assist – this season, and he has created the most chances of any player in the team with 16 shot attempts. Shelvey’s placement in this list is, in my opinion, spot on.
The mercurial midfielder takes some heat for his lack of defensive urgency at times, but he truly is the primary playmaker in the middle of the park. Shelvey’s absence was especially noticeable against Southampton as Newcastle United struggled to string together multiple passes and create any meaningful chances.